Second CBI charge-sheet soon against Mallya, to name officials

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New Delhi, Sep 17 (IANS) The CBI will name some bank officials in its second charge-sheet to be filed soon against fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya in a Rs 9,000-crore loan default case against him and his now-defunct Kingfisher Airlines, informed sources said.

Both serving and retired senior officials of a consortium of 17 banks, including the SBI, who had handled the Kingfisher Airlines loans, are to be named as accused in the charge-sheet as the CBI has gathered enough evidence against them on misuse of official position, the sources said.

The charge-sheet will mention the details of loan fraud committed by Mallya against a consortium of 17 banks led by the State Bank of India (SBI), said the sources, adding that some of these loans were granted despite Kingfisher’s low creditworthiness and overvaluation of some securities.

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Kingfisher began defaulting on loans beginning 2009-10.

According to the sources, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has come across the role of some senior bank officials in the irregularities while disbursing these loans.

The then Chief Managing Directors of banks — O.P. Bhatt (SBI), T.S. Narayanaswami (Bank of India), M.D. Mallya (Bank of Baroda), S.K. Goel (UCO Bank), and then Chairman of United Bank — are to be named in the charge-sheet against whom action was not taken in 2009 when a loan of Rs 2,000 crore was sanctioned to Kingfisher, said the sources.

“Bhatt is learnt to have led the consortium to offer the Rs 2,000 crore loan and also ensured that the SBI have a loan of Rs 300 crore on an ad hoc basis in August 2010.”

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Ex-Kingfisher Airlines Chief Financial Officer A. Raghunathan and other former senior executives are also likely to be named in the charge-sheet.

Mallya is currently facing extradition from London where he flew on March 2, 2016.

The CBI last year had filed a charge-sheet against Mallya in a separate case related to a Rs 900 crore pending loan given by IDBI Bank in which senior officials of the bank were allegedly involved.

The probe agency had registered two cases against Mallya related to the IDBI loans in 2015 and a consortium loan in 2016.

The CBI and the Enforcement Directorate, which is probing the money laundering aspect in the case, have named IDBI officials B.K. Batra, Yogesh Agarwal, O.V. Bundelu, S.K Shrivastava and R.S. Sridhar in their charge sheets last year.

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The CBI FIR alleged that the SBI and its consortium banks had advanced various credit facilities to Kingfisher Airlines between 2005 and 2010.

During 2009-10, the company failed to meet its repayment commitments to the banks.

–IANS

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